Yoga for Your Eyes
Yoga eye strengthening exercises can help you improve vision, reducing the need to wear spectacles and contact lenses. They can also prolong strong and healthy vision as you age.
The eyes are the “window to the soul“, and looking after them is particularly important. Yoga eye strengthening exercises are a simple and effective way of doing this.
The benefits of yoga eye strengthening exercises are numerous; better and clearer vision, fewer headaches, better sleep, deeper appreciation of life, better overall health, greater confidence and ability to concentrate among others.
According to yogic knowledge, 50% of all energy (prana) utilised by the body is in the activity of the eyes (yes, 50%). More than digestion, respiration, elimination, mental activity or anything else. As such eye care is a particularly important part of the yoga system.
In fact eyestrain and lack of proper rest of the eyes has a knock-on effect on your general health so paying attention to your eyes pays huge dividends.
With our modern lifestyle we can spend many hours per day looking at illuminated TV and computer screens, during which the eyeballs don’t have to change focus. “Use it or lose it”, is a phrase we are all familiar with, and this applies to your eyes. So let’s take a look at some simple yoga eye exercises to improve vision…
Eye Strengthening Exercises – Trataka
Trataka is one of the greatest eye strengthening exercises, as well as being an aid in helping build our powers of concentration. This yoga eye exercise is very simple.
Pick a simple object (I’m going to use a lit candle as an example), and place it about three feet in front of you. Sit in a comfortable position and gaze steadily at the flame, without strain and without blinking. After a period your eyes will begin to water. At this point close and rest them, continuing to “see” the flame in your mind’s eye. When this image fades, repeat the process. Continue for as long as you feel comfortable, building up to about 15 minutes if so desired.
Eye Strengthening Exercises Sun and Moon Gazing
Just as air is healthful to the lungs, light is to the eyes. The practice of sun-gazing (suryadhyana) is best performed at sunrise and as the sun sets in the evening (don’t do it at midday!). It is best to begin slowly, perhaps for a minute or so, and build up to around 10 minutes. The technique is very simple: look at the sun with relaxed, wide-open eyes.
Do not strain, and if your eyes start to water then it’s time to stop. If you find this too intense then begin by looking in the direction of the sun rather than straight at it, and when comfortable you can progress to the full exercise.
Moon-gazing (chandradhyana) is even more comfortable. Simply look at the moon, or stars, with relaxed, wide-open eyes.
Other yoga eye strengthening exercises to improve vision
Do these 4 together, spending about 1 or 2 minutes on each. Be sure not to use undue strain, and spend 30 seconds between each part with the eyes closed and rested. Sit upright for the duration.
Nasal gazing.This involves gazing slightly downwards to the tip of the nose.
Eyebrow gazing. This involves gazing slightly upwards to the point between the eyebrows.
Right shoulder gazing. Facing straight ahead, fix the gaze on the end of the right shoulder.
Left shoulder gazing. Take a wild guess. Yep, that’s it 😉
After doing the eye strengthening exercises vigorously rub your hands together and place your warm palms over your closed eyes. Allow the heat to be absorbed into the eyes. Hold for 30 seconds.
All of these eye strengthening exercises are highly recommended and you should start to see benefits within a few weeks of regular practice.